Recommendations for High Risk Countries

Traveling to high risk countries requires special consideration. It is important to take the minimum required to get your work done.


  • Consider taking a new or rebuilt machine and load only data that is needed for the trip. Make sure to encrypt the machine.
  • USB drives should be left at home whenever possible. USB drives are easily lost and corrupted. If traveling with a USB drive is necessary, be sure that it is encrypted.
  • If you are taking your own laptop be sure that the software is current, make sure the computer is backed up and encrypted, and remove any documents  containing sensitive information.

Mobile Phones

  • Consider if your phone is necessary for the trip. Are you able to get by with a Wi-Fi only device?
  • Consider borrowing a phone in the country or purchase a phone with a local SIM card.
  • If using your own phone is necessary, back up the phone and enroll it in an international rate plan. After the data is saved, reset the phone to factory defaults, and restore your backup upon return.

More Recommendations

  • Do not plug your phone into charger kiosks. There is a possibility of a hostile computer on the other end.
  • Be cautious of your surroundings. Watch for potential thieves and people looking over your shoulder.
  • Do not leave devices unattended including in hotel safes.